The success of ‘Parasites’ is a triumph for a very niche kind of cinema -Korean, political and unleashed-, but also for those fictions with class reading that now receive a more accurate appreciation than they would have received years earlier. If only ‘Us’ had been released a few months later, perhaps the reception would not have been “complicated and confused”.
Only with a message one does not get anywhere, it is clear, but also understanding it when it is so at the core of a work is key to understanding the decisions you are making (argumental and also tonal). Perhaps that is why one of the sensations of recent years entered so wonderfully, which can be seen through HBO Max. This is ‘The White Lotus’.
It is possible that the Mike White series would have worked in another context prior to ‘Parasite’. Or in one without a pandemic, which further accentuated our perception of social inequalities. What is clear is that what was fundamental to its relevance was the summer moment in which it was released. And not only because of the obviousness of being located in a vacation resort, but also because of the stupendous levity that so well complements its scathing satire.
Comprised of 6 episodes, the series follows several guests vacationing at a tropical resort for a week as they relax and rejuvenate in paradise. But With each passing day, everything becomes more complicated.from his initial intentions of enjoyment and relaxation to his relationship with the “laughing” hotel employees, becoming palpable a series of existing inequalities between all of them.
There is also a component of suspense and mystery, by framing the series from the beginning with the presence of a dead person at the end of this entire week unleashed. That adds uneasiness to the well-measured discomfort for which he bets his comedyfabulously led by a great cast where people like Jennifer Coolidge, Alexandra Daddario, Murray Bartlett, Steve Zahn or Jake Lacy stand out.
‘The White Lotus’: scathing satire and summer lightness
A comedy well used and complemented by the satire on the privileged that White wants to launch. He knows very well where to aim with the darts, pulling towards the easy targets and also those who are initially presented with sheepskin -something that he also touched on in a subtle and elegant way in ‘Iluminada’-. This choral representation of social and economic inequalities is well anchored in the core of the series.
Of course, ‘The White Lotus’ isn’t the only message. Its well-conducted tone, which makes its six 50-minute episodes sit well, its inspired cast and a wonderful soundtrack make it an ideal summer entertainment. It worked last year and it will work just fine this year.. It’s hard to tell how the second installment will play out – we can’t really call it a season, apparently, because of how it’s being sold – but White has earned the benefit of the doubt to try to convince us.
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